Color Families

A color wheel shows how to mix colors to make new colors. Can you find the primary and secondary colors on the color wheel?

Colors can be grouped together in color families, like primary and secondary. Color families help create a mood, or feeling, in artwork. There are 4 color families in this video: primary, secondary, warm, and cool. There is another color family- neutral, which is brown, gray, black, and white. Neutral colors remind you of the earth: brown soil, gray clouds, black sky, white stars.

Here are the warm, cool, and neutral color families. They help show different feelings, like excitement, anger, and calm.


  1. Look at the artworks below. What is the main color family shown in each artwork? These artworks might give you ideas for your own art.
  2. Choose a color family: warm, cool, neutral.
  3. Make a plan in your mind of what your art will be about. How will your color family show the mood or feeling of your artwork?
  4. Choose drawing center materials that go with your art idea. All red labeled materials are open. The ipads and chalk pastels are closed.
  5. Fill in your paper, don’t leave white space. Take your time to make art you are proud of.